Monday, October 10, 2005

Pepper-Cumin Rasam

It rained heavily on Saturday night and it was quite dreary and cold all weekend long. Given how long we've enjoyed the warm weather this year, it was a bit hard to adjust to the fierce wind and pouring rain. I was reminded of the monsoons in Bombay and how much I loved sipping hot rasam and cuddling up with a great book in such weather. So I started craving rasam. Not just simple tomato rasam that I usually make but a very spicy variety called milagu-seeraka rasam that has a fiery kick from the fresh black peppercorn and red chillies ground into a paste and mixed in with the tamarind water. So I made a big batch to last all week long.

Tamarind - a small ball the size of a lime
Salt - 1 1/2 tsp
Asafoetida - a bit
Mustard - 1/2 tsp

For the masala
Coriander seeds - 1/2 tsp
Pepper - 1/2 tsp
Thur Dhal - 1 tsp
Red chillies - 2
Cumin seeds - 1/2 tsp

Fry the masala ingredients (except cumin seeds) and grind them with cumin seeds into a smooth paste. Soak the tamarind and extract about 500 ml of juice. Add salt and asafoetida. Boil for five minutes and then add the ground masala. Simmer for 10 minutes. When the rasam froths up, add curry leaves. Remove from the fire. Season with mustard.

I love how Indian recipes are so perfectly imprecise - please use lots of good sense and intuition when making this! I can hardly describe how I do it myself as I read Indian recipes for the basic proportions and method before doing my own thing.


Blogger Paa"ji" said...


11:06 PM  

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